The Aysgarth Society is amongst one of the first in the Circuit, originating in 1766. A cottage on the site of the present chapel was used for services until the present chapel was built in 1900 at a cost of £1,000. The chapel is a standing memorial to local craftsmen.
It is also a memorial to the old Wensleydale Circuit's most famous son — Sylvester Whitehead who, after entering the ministry in 1863, served for ten years as a missionary in China, and subsequently rose to become President of the Wesleyan Conference in 1904.
When the society moved into the new chapel it was forty-five strong. Today it is 13.
The chapel was built in 1890 and was refurbished in November 2007 when most of the pews were replaced by chairs, many chairs being donated by members of the congregation. A new central heating system was also installed. The floor was carpeted, and a new screen fitted between the chapel and the entrance area.
The chapel has been rewired and has installed a ramp to the rear door to aid access.
We enjoy a good relationship with our friends from St. Paul's Church and support each other's events.
Carlton (in Coverdale), appears on our earliest Circuit Plan, 1815, when a service was held in the village every Sunday; in the home of a certain John Yeoman. A chapel was built, on the site of the present chapel, in 1815. It was either enlarged or re-built in 1880; with a porch being added at a later date.
The Chapel at Gayle is, as far as we can discover, one of the few 'originals' in the circuit dating back to 1833. The Schoolroom was added later. Much of the labour and materials were provided voluntarily. In 1927 a five week mission added 40 new members to the society. Amongst those who were converted were four well known 'Gayleites' who came on the 'Plan' and between them took a staggering 105 appointments a quarter. Of great historical interest is the Camp Meeting which is still held each year.
Gunnerside Chapel is now the only Methodist Church in Swaledale. Like many places of worship in the Dales, its future is by no means secure.
The Chapel is the most prominent building in the village. It is basically sound and it is worth investing in repairs and maintenance to keep it this way. Residents of Gunnerside, and others whose family history lies in the village, are determined to keep it going as long as possible. It is a great asset to the village, offering fortnightly Sunday worship as well as services for the traditional festivals of Midsummer, Shortest Day, Harvest Festival and Easter. It is also an important venue for funerals and weddings and for public concerts.
The FoGC group was set up in early 2015, following a very well attended public meeting, when it looked as if the Chapel might have to close. More than twenty individual donors are now contributing monthly, or have made one-off gifts. Gunnerside Estate has made a substantial donation. Several fund raising events (concerts, plays and an art exhibition) have been held and more are planned. The FoGC is a registered charity and qualifies for gift aid refunds on individual donations.
FoGC aims to tap into additional sources of funding, over and above those normally available to the Church Council. All money raised is solely for the benefit of this Chapel. Should it ever close, any money remaining would be returned to donors or given to other agreed local charities, rather than reverting to the central Methodist Church. This is a point on which many local families feel strongly as it was their ancestors who funded the building of the Chapel in the 19th century.
So far, the FoGC has contributed over £5000, for: heating oil; external painting; organ repairs; upgrading the electrics; new flooring; treatment of woodworm; and materials for redecorating the vestry and kitchen (done by voluntary labour). Work is currently underway to modernise the cloakroom and to install new kitchen units (the materials for which have been donated).
If you would like any further information on how you might contribute to the FoGC, please contact David Crapper on 01748 886325 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shelagh Thomlinson, Jackie McCartney, David Crapper (Trustees of FoGC)
The accompanying files contain lists of all the people who are recorded as having been buried in the graveyard in Gunnerside. A total of 848 names has been identified, from four sources:
This produced 505 names, the earliest burial date being 1816. Some names appear in only one source, others in two or more. Every effort was made to cross check information and to remove any duplications (but some may still remain).
We hope this survey has been of interest. If you have any comments or would like to suggest any corrections or additions, please contact:
David Crapper, Greenacres, Gunnerside, DL11 6LE
01748 886325 email@example.com
* Footnote: the numbers are in two parts, which define the grave number and the
person — thus, number 151.3 refers to the third person buried in grave 151.
Built in 1855 the chapel was completely renovated in 1930 and enlarged by the addition of a porch and schoolroom.
The small chapel in the adjacent village of Spennithorne closed in 1925. The two villages then worshipped together at Harmby.
There is a slight slope on the path through the gateway and yard.
Steps to the main front door with handrails on both sides and temporary ramp.
Access on a level surface from the yard through the kitchen door to the toilet area (accessible for wheelchairs).
There are steps to the worship area but the temporary ramp is available for this area.
Room for wheelchair users within the main worship area and up to the communion rail.
The worship area has a hearing loop.
Large print hymn book available.
Hunton Methodist Chapel opened in 1829, which is the date of the deed when the property was secured. The title deeds from 1773 show that the site originally consisted of a house, a garden and an orchard.
A Sunday school room was then added onto the front of the Chapel in the 1840's, then a small kitchen and toilet were added on at a later date.
On 29th November 2004 work started to knock down the old kitchen and toilet and re-build the kitchen. Two toilets one of which is a disabled toilet and add a porch which was completed by 9th May 2005.
There are 3 steps to get up to the Chapel in the garden.
Handrails are in place.
Inside the Chapel there are steps at the front of the Chapel leading to the pulpit.
The Chapel and garden are wheelchair accessible , a ramp is in place
There is space within the Chapel for wheelchair users.
There is a concrete ramp running up to the front door of the Chapel.
There are toilet facilities , one is suitable for wheelchair users.
A hearing loop is available.
There are no large print hymn books but these can be sourced if required.
There was a Methodist Society in 1814.
The foundation stones for the present Chapel at Leyburn were laid in 1884. Our forefathers had to leave the old meeting room because it was too small.
It has a large almost Anglican look about it, with a large interior and an adjacent church hall which is in constant use.
Strategically situated, with a strong membership, it has often taken the lead in leading the old Wensleydale Circuit; it is now the 'home' chapel of the Superintendent Minister of the North Yorkshire Dales Circuit.
In 1814 a plot of land was bought for 5s. and so began the Chapel at Marsett, which was to serve the whole of Raydaleside. In 1897 a new site was acquired in exchange for the old Chapel building and site.
Today this popular little chapel has a membership of eight.
Melmerby appeared on the preaching plan between 1828 until 1863. Then for a number of years like minded Methodists met in local houses until 1894 when the society purchased a former joiners' shop for £50 in 1894.
The present membership as of December 2015 totalled eight.
The access to Chapel is level.
There are 3 steps up to the main door with a handrail.
There are no steps inside the Chapel.
The building has access for wheelchairs via a permanent ramp with handrails to the entrance door.
There is access and space for wheelchair users to worship.
Toilet facilities are accessible to wheelchair users.
The Chapel has a hearing loop.
Large print hymn books are available.
West Burton can safely lay claim to have one of the loveliest Methodists Chapels; and one with a history. The present chapel built in 1898 by local craftsmen replaces one that was built in 1812 and which, until fairly recently was used as the Village Institute.
Present membership stands at nineteen. They have their own website: www.westburtonchapel.com This site operates independently of the NYDalesmeth site.